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Foam Wing Panels (Professional version)

Profili Pro offers an improved way to draw and cut foam wings using a hot wire bow

Why a new Foam Wing Panel feature?

The possibility to manage 'Ribbed wing panels' was inserted in Profili since version 2.15 Pro. But the posibility to manage foam wing panels was missing. The only way to draw foam cutting templates was to use the basic function included in 'Airfoil management'.
Version 2.16 Pro offers now a new Foam Wing Panel management, similar to the 'Ribbed wing panels', but reengineered for hot wire foam cutting.
You can find here a brief description of this new feature:
  • Trapezoidal or elliptic (!!!) wing plan management
  • Templates shaping and computing uses the specified values for hot wire diameter and foam melted thickness (kerf).
  • You can specify different airfoils and incidence angles at root and tip.
  • You can apply a different sheeting thickness for the upper and lower face of the airfoil, and you can specify a partial sheeting.
  • Surface or internal spars manegement. New templates will be created to cut the spars.
  • Lightening holes management. New templates will be created to cut the holes.
  • You can select between different template configurations.
  • You can specify a not null distance between templates and foam block.
  • Setting of leading edge ramps type and length
  • Setting of trailing edge ramps type and length
  • Station lines and reference holes management.
  • You can print very big templates also with your small format printer using tiling.
  • HPGL, GCode and Optimized DXF generation
  • Offset computing for CNC milling machine
  • Creation of equispaced nose checking templates
Using this window you can create-manage foam or ribbed wing panels:


Once you created a new wing panel you can print the wing plant, the cutting templates and of nose checking templates, on a printer without limits in its paper format, or export them in DXF, HPGL or G-code (to drive CNC machines).

How you can create a new Wing Panel

Let's take a look at the way you can create a new wing panel.
Simply click on the 'New foam panel...' function included in the menu and a dialog window will start in Wizard mode. You can navigate the wizard and select to save your work once you reached the last page. You can always go back to change the settings in all the pages, no limits at all.

Here is a fast preview of the wizard:

Wing plant setting:

In this page you can name the panel and set its plant form and size.

You can select between a trapezoidal or elliptical plant.

You must also define the swept-back and root/tip incidence, to manage wash-out.

In the lower part of the window you can see the preview of the panel you are going to create. You can zoom it or take linear or angular measurements on it.

Airfoil selection:

Not a lot to say about this page, here you can select in the usual way the root-tip airfoils and decide if math interpolation should be applied.

In the next pages you can switch from wing plant to root-tip rib drawings.

Sheeting settings:

You can set different sheetings for the upper and lower part of the panel.

Now you can also set a partial sheeting.

Clicking the supplied button you can automaticaly set sheeting for a Delta-box type structure.

Spars setting:

This function is similar to the ribbed version.

By clicking the supplied buttons you can set immediately spars for a Delta-box struct.

The actual (working) spar is highlighted in blue, so that you can find it easily in the drawing.

Lightening holes setting:

Great news for Lightening holes too!

You can now select a rib shaped type of hole, and you can also apply the automatic generation option. In this way Profili will create holes according to leading edge and spars placements.

Then, if you like, you can disable this option and fine tune them in manual way.

Templates configuration:

In this window you can select your template configuration

You can select among :

1. All templates with lower support base

2. Upper and lower support base

3. For CNC hot wire cutter

Template setting:

In this window you can define the placements of templates and panel.

Templates LE and TE ramps setting:

The ramps are those parts of templates driving the hot wire in e out the cutting zone.

Station lines and reference holes:

You can select the station lines number and set the reference holes.

You can check the result in the graphical preview picture.

Template options:

The options in the left side let you to define the input-output ramps for spars and lightening holes.

On the right side you can find the options to manage grouping of spars and lightening holes.

Printing format settings:

Printing management has been totaly re-engineered.

Now the selection of the format for Drawing Sheets is free, no more limited by your printer max paper format.

For the 3 types of drawings (wing plant, cutting templates and nose templates) you can select 3 different sheet formats, then you can reposition the items in the sheet (see next section) and finally print them in your preferred (or I suppose the biggest supported by your printer...) paper format.

Profili will tile the full sheet in multiple paper if requested. Then, using the drawn markers, you can manually assemble the printed foils to generate the full sheet. Of you can export the drawing in DXF, HPGL or G-code.

Templates preview and placement:

This is a quite new feature!

You can not only flip, mirror and move the templates in the sheet, but also cut&paste them from a sheet to another.

In this way you can optimize spaces, avoiding to waste building material, nice feature for CNC machines.

Then the configuration can be saved, reloaded and modified one more time simply clicking on ribs to select them and using the supplied buttons to flip, mirror or move them.

Cut your templates using CNC milling:

Here is how you can see the Full set of templates (pure cutting path, ready to cut)..

Now the unnecessary linees have been removed, the cutting path has been optimized and the milling diameter correction has been applied.

In the next section you can see a zoomed view where you will understand better how this correction works.

Templates (ready to cut) sheet - detail:

Here is a zoomed view of the previous drawing.

In black you can see the desired shape of the rib, in red the cutting path and in green the milled material.

You can also see how the 'Break cutting path' function works. This is to avoid the just cutted item goes away.

You can print this sheet (with tiling options) or export it to DXF, HPGL or G-code file. The last one can drive 3 axis or 2.5 axis CNC milling machines.

If the sheet format you selected wasn't large enough to include all of the ribs, Profili will create multiple sheets. You can then navigate among sheets by the supplied toolbar button.

You can print (with tiling options, like for wing plant) or export these sheets to DXF or HPGL files.

I hope now you can understand better how Foam Wing Panel management works, and how it can help you.
This feature is full operative in the Professional version of Profili, but you can use it in demo mode in the base version.

News of version 2.28: Since version 2.28 a new wizard to generate printing and exporting as a Cad document has been added, see Draw-Export wizard for Wing panels and a new wizard to generate CNC cutting files as Cam projects has been added, see Cam cutting wizard for Wing panels

Write to info@profili2.com or to st.duranti@alice.it for more info.

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